9/11 and today.

September 11, 2001. I was sitting in freshman math at the University of North Alabama. A classmate came into class and said that there was a plane crash. My professor with his thick ’80s glasses and long greasy hair ignored the student and we went on with class.

My dad had planned to visit me that day. He was driving the 2.5 hours from Tuscaloosa, AL to Florence, AL just to spend the day with me. I called him after class and we went to my dorm room. We sat and watched the news. Over and over again they showed the planes crashing. I was so confused and so sad. Daddy just sat there with me and we prayed. I am so grateful my dad came to visit me that day. Having him with me helped me to feel more safe and gave me peace.

Twelve years later and this day still just makes your heart hurt. You wake up and feel confused and sad. I think about how the world was after that day.

Things we did good after 9/11:

  • We listened to others stories. We gave value to their life and to the role they played in this world. This Vanity Fair issue is an example of this. 
  • We valued service men and women. We thanked them for their bravery and their tenacity. We bought their meals and shook their hands.
  • We prayed for our country and our leaders. We knew we needed to healed and that we needed hope. Hope that can only come from Jesus.
  • We began to move on. Not in a way that took away meaning from what happened to our country, but in a way that honored America.
  •  We are still remembering 9/11. When big things happen in our life we need to process them. I think it’s healthy to go back and think on that day. I also think it’s healthy to have people walk through big things in our life with us. Maybe 9/11 did not affect us all in the same way. But maybe you have been through something that has affected you and you are trying to deal with it alone. My advice is that you seek wise counsel.

This week my husband and I were talking about everything going on in the world, especially Syria. My heart is so sad and broken for Syria. And how it can be easy to live in so much fear. In the last few weeks in New Orleans we have had two children killed on our streets. It can honestly make you not want to go outside. Thinking on 9/11 can bring back some of that fear. But what Adrian and I decided is that we can’t live in this overwhelming sense of fear. So instead we signed up for a race. It’s just a local 5k at the end of the month. But we signed up for it because we want to have something to look forward to, we want to have something to work at, and we want to go on living our life. If we allow fear to consume us, we would stop running, we would stop telling others about Jesus, and we would just lock ourselves inside until it’s all said and done. But it is so important that we get outside, that we tell others about Jesus, and that we live life.

So today I want to encourage you with this tweet I saw from the Carousel of Progress at WDW:

“Hug someone. Live life. Smile. Go outdoors. Take time to reflect and never forget. Learn from the past to help make a better tomorrow.”

go and be a light,

leah

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